Sides is the author, most recently, of On Desperate Ground: The Epic Story of Chosin Reservoir, the Greatest Battle of the Korean War, just out in paperback from Anchor-Vintage.

This Veteran’s Day, as we remember those men and women we’ve sent into battle, we should also take a moment to remember the fateful decisions, sometimes tragically bad ones, our commanders made that put our fighting forces directly and often needlessly in harm’s way.

In that dubious department, few generals in modern history come close to Douglas MacArthur.

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